Using ICT to access Multicultural texts. The internet allows for greater access and immediacy, which otherwise would not have been available. In a globalised world of interdependence. The interconnected world we occupy now insists on greater communication and interaction between its citizens. What this warrants is a greater need of communication between cultures. The vehicle through which this communication is exerted is ICT. Country borders no longer constitute boundaries. The proliferation of ICT has allowed people greater access and immediacy of international understanding and dialogue. Concerning the Australian curriculum, general capabilities such as sustainability and creativity can be approached through a cultural perspectives lens. In subject English, textual study becomes a perfect mode through which to consider other cultural contexts and lifestyles. Due to Australia’s Asia-pacific location, the region is a dominant feature of the texts concerning this aspect of the world. The Asia – Australia and Oceania nexus becomes an authentic and viable way of teaching world and cultural understanding to students of differing customs as well as their similarities. The complexity of culture and cultural identity will prove fruitful discussion for the classroom. The availability intercultural dramas online sites allows a platform for cultural recognition and discussion- as well as fostering empathy and harmony.
As far as using ICT to enrich the teaching of Shakespeare, there are many sites available which cater to the digitalising the Bard’s work and times. The globe becomes more interactive and accessible, allowing Shakespeare’s context to have greater immediacy to a modern audience as an online virtual world. This experience allows students insight into what in print would be a difficult context to imagine. ICT sites of virtual nature concerning Shakespeare’s time will allow students greater scope for imaginative and empathetic tasks that warrant student immersion into ‘secondary worlds’. Since Shakespeare by his very nature is complex persona than his breadth and depth of work is likewise cognitively rich and intensive. What this warrants from students is an avenue intellectual engagement whilst also providing intellectually release. Interactive sites on Shakespeare and particularly the noteworthy one affiliated to universities allow students greater scope to understand, interpret , interrogate and immerse themselves simulated interactive sites which make 15th century personalities easier imagine. Shakespeare’s work by their very nature also encourage deep levels of discovery learning and immersion- further extending the student.
The topic of this thread explores the ways in which lesson activities can be informed by ICT. Lesson activities are the building blocks of instruction and pave the platform for formative assessment. These activities can be as varied as possible. In the case of textual study in which grammar knowledge is warranted teachers would integrate grammar into textual study to contextualise grammar instruction and understanding. The site ‘Grammar monster’ is a site rich in the phrase, clause and single word analysis. The many topics and sub- topics of parts of speech can be further contextualised in passages from books to authenticate the study of grammar usage. Regarding the use of the site I find the source tends to be easily accessible and manoeuvrable. In order to aid grammar instruction students are given many examples of parts of speech in context highlighting their very use and the variance in usage. Confusing words are also explained through sentences and scenarios. Such similarities as ‘accept/ except’ are contextualised for their various meanings. Students will find the site non-threatening and the information easily manageable. Furthermore the clear layout of the site will better aid student engagement and comprehension. At the bottom of the explanations are cue suggestions of related topics for further differentiation and discovery. As far as teacher strategies are concerned, students can either use the site independently to update their skills inn grammar or the teacher may use the site as mode of joint construction in which the wholes class navigates and discovers communally. Perhaps the latter suggestion would allow for greater support. However, the site itself provides enough support for an individual to negotiate for oneself. As ICT must be integrated into lessons if it is to have amore genuine impact on student learning.
The collaborative use of technology is simply that which concerns the many ways in which ICT can be used between and amongst people. 2012 is the national year of reading. The state library of Victoria has showcased an extensive range of online literary resources. These particular resources are print centered. They would be perfect reference for a unit such as Shakespeare or a textual study, such as Austen or Gaskell etc. What the site the ‘mirror of the Worlds’ features are many rare and prized manuscripts of canonical texts which students have easy access to. The site also displays a generous display of contextual and literary backgrounds of such texts. Such information being easily accessible will benefit student access to respected texts. Since textual study and appreciation is a dominant aspect of secondary English such online sites as ‘ mirror of the world’ provide for the issue of equity and student access to be countered as being a barrier.. Since ICT can foster collaboration it can also encourage what Lev Vygotsky termed ‘dialectical constructivism’. Vygotsky recognized the many ways in which student interaction and activity could be enhanced and furthered by the use of discussion. Information technology has now furthered the modes by which this interactive discussion between students could be fostered. Such collaborative features as Edmodo and Fakebook or Wiki’s allow students alternatives in communication and representation. Familiarity with social networking will be an advantage for students as they build upon that knowledge to further their knowledge in sites like Edmodo. Simple knowledge transfer strategies as exposure to a site will foster and enrich student competence and independence.
It is a sign of the times that the advent, introduction and subsequent proliferation of technology has rendered the 21st century the Information Age. As a result the tools available for teacher usage in classrooms are many and varied. There are a plethora of resources that both teachers and student can relish. In the case where students are in need of supplementary text ideas than such online resources as can be found are a necessary addition to what can be utilised. Supplementary texts may be specific to the stage 6 English component but they need not be. Students in stage 4 and 5 would at one point in their English secondary studies require extra texts to extend them or to simply refer to. The internet and its vast database of information allows for that ease when negotiating material to select. As Karen Yager has suggested most of the articles that are on offer allow for an extensive coverage of texts. Specifically, the texts displayed are an outline of the general range of print and video material from speeches to the ‘Wonderful books of Lessmore’. With the available resources students can either be inspired to create their own ( hence it becomes a scaffolding tool. Or the exposure to the extra material can allow them access to different texts and textual features for their own reference).
“Nine requisites for contented living:
Health enough to make work a pleasure.
Wealth enough to support your needs.
Strength to battle with difficulties and overcome them.
Grace enough to confess your sins and forsake them.
Patience enough to toil until some good is accomplished.
Charity enough to see some good in your neighbor.
Love enough to move you to be useful and helpful to others.
Faith enough to make real the things of God.
Hope enough to remove all anxious fears concerning the future.”
― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“We are our own devils; we drive ourselves out of our Edens.”
― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe